Naomi Long said: “As local representatives, we are in constant contact with the Housing Executive on behalf of local constituents experiencing difficulties with housing issues.
“However, in the last 18 months we have noticed a disturbing increase in the number of homelessness cases which we are contacted about.
“Private rental accommodation remains an option for some, however, housing benefit has not kept pace with rising house prices and rising rents, so many people simply cannot afford the private rental option.
“We have a particular concern about the number of vulnerable people who now make up the waiting list in the East Belfast area.
“The proportion of older people on the list for example is much higher than in other parts of Belfast, making up around a quarter of the entire list.
“Consideration also needs to be given to those with disabilities and restricted mobility, as suitable adapted property is extremely scarce.
“The meeting was constructive and we will continue to liaise with the Housing Executive in the coming months to ensure that the housing stock is increased to meet the needs of people in this area.”